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What do you get when you pay $99 for a logo?

Today, I had the rare opportunity to witness one of the most unethical practices one could commit in the graphic design field. 

Two weeks ago, we moved offices to bigger space. Upon moving, I noticed the sign on the office next door read “Website Services” among a myriad services, including surveillance cameras and other random things. I thought nothing of it, besides, there are far more websites to be worked on than what my firm can handle.

Last week, one of my designers was invited into their office and engaged in the expected “small talk”. The subject of logo design came up and the owner mentioned that they, too, provide logo design. Their methodology was, at the least, amazing.

Step 1: Do an industry search on Google Images. Find a suitable logo that symbolizes your client.

Step 2: Download and import it into your preferred design software.

Step 3: re-color the logo and remove the name.

Step 4: Replace the name in similar type, save, and deliver to the client.

I tested this process with our logo and it only took about 4 minutes to complete. See below.

 Logo found on Google Images 

This means that they could, in theory, generate $1,485 an hour for their masterful thievery. Should you ever decide to get a logo designed or, really any visual representation of your company, please remember that you get what you pay for.

Patrick King

Patrick is the Founder of Imagine and advisor to places on brand strategy and creative. His insights have been published in Inc. Magazine, SmartCEO, Washington Business Journal, The Washington Post, and Chief Marketer, among other publications, and shared at conferences throughout the US. He also has an amazing sock collection.

One Comment

  • What your competitor is doing is not unethical, it is stealing.

    Which is a whole ‘nuther matter.

    Honest pricing comes down to identifying your market and serving your market niche with a product that has value to the people who are paying YOU for it.

    If you sell Monolo Blahneks for $1,200 a pair, you wouldn’t waste a mili-second trying to convince someone who shops at Payless that there is a reason on earth — logical or emotional — to spend more than $20 on shoes.

    As professional marketers, we have to stop thinking of one price or level of services as being the only right one and the others as being wrong… Home Depot and Restoration Hardware both do business, so does Brooks Brothers and Marshalls, Godiva and Hershey. The list goes one… each one has their own business model and runs their business accordingly.

    Likewise, trying to sell a branding campaign to your local plumber when all he wants are some business cards with a picture of monkey wrench available from Staples is like hitting yourself in the head with, well…. a monkey wrench.

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